A Time for Everything
Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8 NIV
There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
Sometimes there are no words that can be said about a particular circumstance. There is no solution, no possible change or fix.
It is what it is.
Our response may start off with a deep sadness and tears, but when the magnitude of what this means hits us and there is weeping.
The “here I am, facing the biggest heartache of my life” situation is here to stay and there is nothing anyone can do to prevent it from barreling down. The grief comes in waves, there is a deep sadness over what is or will be lost, and there are many, many tears.
There is a time to weep.
I am so thankful God and His people throughout the generations know these deep emotions. It helps take the edge off the pain a little to know that when we are feeling so deeply, we are not alone — even if we feel that way.
Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am in distress;
my eyes grow weak with sorrow,
my soul and body with grief.
My life is consumed by anguish
and my years by groaning;
my strength fails because of my affliction,
and my bones grow weak.[Psalm 39:9-10 NIV]
God knows and sees us in our grief and weeps with us. He created us with the capacity for a range of emotions and we are created in His image. And when we think we are facing the circumstance alone, it is important to remember that God can and will carry us through. It doesn’t mean there won’t be sadness or weeping. It means He is alongside us, leading us, carrying us, tending to us, providing for us, and showing His grace upon grace.
The Psalms are filled with believers in distress. There is just a sampling below. I take great comfort in knowing that I am not alone when my grief is profound. I have His Word to remind me of His love and provision from the beginning of time.
Psalm 4:1 Answer me when I call to you, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.
Psalm 18:6 In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears.
Psalm 20:1 May the Lord answer you when you are in distress; may the name of the God of Jacob protect you.
Psalm 31:9 Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am in distress; my eyes grow weak with sorrow, my soul and body with grief.
Psalm 55:17 Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress, and he hears my voice.
Psalm 81:7 In your distress you called and I rescued you, I answered you out of a thundercloud; I tested you at the waters of Meribah.
Psalm 86:7 When I am in distress, I call to you, because you answer me.
Psalm 102:2 Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly.
Psalm 102:5 In my distress I groan aloud and am reduced to skin and bones.
Heartache is never fun to walk through. If you are challenged with fresh or long-standing grief, I pray that you find comfort in God’s promises and His Word. Ask a friend to pray with and for you. And please don’t hesitate to find a healthy pastor to visit with.
On the way,